15 “If you love me, keep my commands. 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. 18 I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. 19 Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. 20 On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. 21 Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them.”
22 Then Judas (not Judas Iscariot) said, “But, Lord, why do you intend to show yourself to us and not to the world?”
23 Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. 24 Anyone who does not love me will not obey my teaching. These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me.
25 “All this I have spoken while still with you. 26 But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.
To reflect on who the Holy Spirit is and what the Holy Spirit does in our lives and in the world.
This is the seventh of a nine-part series looking at the core teachings of the Christian faith. We are looking at the foundational beliefs shared by all followers of Christ. These topics help us reflect on the gospel story and give shape to the way we live our lives.
Today, we are looking at the Holy Spirit, the third person of the Triune God. Anglican theologian J.I. Packer refers to the Spirit as “the shy member of the Trinity” for it is the Spirit’s role not to shine the light on himself, but to shine it on Jesus and all that he has accomplished for us. The Spirit makes Jesus glorious and vivid to us. It is the Spirit’s job to help us experience the presence and power of Christ in our lives so that we are able to love as Jesus loves. The Spirit enables us to live lives that please God and bring him glory. Pleasing God would be impossible apart from the Spirit dwelling within us.
This particular passage is part of what is known as the Upper Room Discourse (John 13-17). On the night before his crucifixion, Jesus gathered his disciples together and helped prepare them for the events that were about to take place—his crucifixion, his resurrection, and the sending of the Holy Spirit.
• You may consider this quote from J.I. Packer:
In this terrain of direct perceptions of God—perceptions of his greatness and goodness, his eternity and infinity, his truth, his love, his glory, all as related to Christ and through Christ to us—understanding was once much richer than is commonly found today. This is a place where we have some relearning to do. The following at least may be said: They presuppose and arise through biblical understanding, and they are to be identified by biblical criteria and interpreted by biblical theology. Nonetheless, they are in themselves immediate and sovereign. They are not under our control; they can neither be demanded nor predicted; they simply happen as God wills. Ordinarily these perceptions are given through the Spirit to the loving and obedient disciple. They bring great joy because they communicate God’s great love…They require you to make prayer a priority, as countless Christians of former days did, which is stupendously difficult in a world that runs you off your feet and will not let you slow down.1
**4. What do you think is being promised in verse 26?
Go back over the passage and prayerfully reflect on it before God. What did you find encouraging or convicting? Are there particular ways you need to apply what you have heard? Are there new ways of acting or thinking to which God is calling you? Talk to God about it. Ask him for grace to believe the truth and to live in light of it. After this period of silence, spend a short time as a group thanking God for the things he has taught you in this lesson before moving on to sharing and prayer.